Stuff We Like: Velocity Dyad Rims

The Velocity Dyad is a tough, no frills, 700c commuting/touring/tandem rim available in 32, 36, 40, and 48 holes in either black or silver finish, with or without machined sidewalls. At 24mm, it’s slightly wider than your typical touring rim (some people even use them on 29’er mountain bikes). With its boxy cross-section, the Velocity Synergy looks more traditional, but the Dyad’s V-shaped cross-section makes the rim stronger and eliminates the need for eyelets. The 36-hole version laced to any decent hub makes a completely bomb-proof commuting wheel. Get the version with machined sidewalls for bump-free braking. Great stuff.

Bead seat diameter: 622
Weight: 480g
ERD = 596

Velocity Dyad

20 Responses to “Stuff We Like: Velocity Dyad Rims”

  • Zen says:

    ok, this is where I am a little uneducated about bikes. Since the rim is wider, do I need to be careful what size tires I use? Why build rims with & without machined sidewalls, what is the difference?

  • Luke says:

    I’ve been delighted with all my Velocity experiences; just be sure to check with your LBS before planning a build. I was unable to get Dyads for my current project (apparently they’re under-produced until late spring), so I went with Salsa Delgado Cross instead.

  • David says:

    FWIW, here’s Jobst Brandt’s take on machined rims from wreck.bikes back in 2003.

  • Bob Baxter says:

    I have built a set of wheels using Velocity Synergy rims, with the offset spoke holes on the rear. I haven’t had a chance to try them yet as the frame is on a slow boat from Taiwan.

  • Alan says:


    My personal experience has been that unmachined rims frequently have a “whump, whump” sound while braking due to the hump at the seam, whereas I’ve never had a machined rim with that issue. Some people may be fine with the bump at the seam, but I prefer a smooth braking surface. The disadvantage to machining is that it shaves some material away from the outer wall, arguably making the rim less durable, though I think it’s less of an issue in practice than in theory.

    This is from Peter White:

    “Most of the rims listed here have machined sidewalls. The machined sidewalls make for very smooth braking, since it ensures that the braking surface is smooth, and that the rim’s width is perfectly consistent.”

    This is from Grant Petersen:

    “The side wall thickness starts out even, even as it gets wavy in the rolling. But when you machine the waves flat, you lop off the high spots, and that takes material away from the sidewalls. So although your braking surface may be flat, you end up with sidewalls that are thin here and thick there. Some rims start out extra thick to compensate for the shaving. But in those cases, the low spots that barely get skimmed remain disproportionately thick.”

    So it seems even the experts aren’t in agreement on this one. That’s probably why we still have both machined and unmachined rims available… :-)

    Regarding rim width and tire compatibility… this is from Sheldon Brown:

    “Although you can use practically any tire/rim combination that shares the same bead seat diameter, it is unwise to use widely disparate sizes.

    If you use a very narrow tire on a wide rim, you risk pinch flats and rim damage from road hazards.

    If you use a very wide tire on a narrow rim, you risk sidewall or rim failure. This combination causes very sloppy handling at low speeds. Unfortunately, current mountain-bike fashion pushes the edge of this. In the interest of weight saving, most current mountain bikes have excessively narrow rims. Such narrow rims work very poorly with wide tires, unless the tires are overinflated…but that defeats the purpose of wide tires, and puts undue stress on the rim sidewalls.”

    Here’s a chart that matches rim widths with tire widths. You can certainly go outside the ranges shown in the chart, but if you bend the rules too far you run the risk of either pinch flatting or damaging a sidewall.

    Here’s Peter White’s recommended tire/rim size combos for his heavy-duty rims:

    I hope that helps!

  • Dwainedibbly says:

    Looks like a very nice rim. I’ve been using Mavic A719 rims for my commuter wheelbuilds lately. Anybody here have experience with both of these?

  • Alan says:

    The Mavic A719 is another very nice rim for commuting (I’ve had them on a couple of bikes). The Mavic is a little heavier (80 grams) and they’re more expensive, so the Dyad wins out by a smidge in my mind. Either will build into a super wheel for commuting.

  • Wild Bill says:

    I just bought a set of hard-core touring wheels from Peter White They used the Velocity Dyads. I thought that Velocity’s were just aero rims for track usage and silly hipsters, but they make “real” wheels, too. I like them.

  • Zen says:

    David – thanks for the link, I of course should have check with Sheldon Brown.

    Alan – Thanks for the awesome information! That is why I love your blog, I always learn something here.

  • Bill Lambert says:

    Alan, I agree 100% with your assessment. I built up my commuter’s front wheel using a Dyad rim (and Jobst’s book you mentioned above), and had Peter White build my rear wheel using a Dyad rim (36H). With 5,000 miles on the wheels, I have had no troubles whatsoever. No wobbles, no broken spokes. I commute on rough-paved chip and seal and gravel roads. These are by far the best wheels I have ever had.

    By the way, I’m going to have Peter build a rear wheel for my road bike using a Mavic Open Pro rim. I want a sturdy, relatively light weight rim for centuries and longer rides.

  • Aaron says:

    Regarding the Mavic A719’s, I have a set built by Peter White with about 900 miles on them so far, and they’re holding up just fine with the abuse I’ve given them.

  • Jack Bulkley says:

    I built some Dyad Velocity wheels this winter on some NOS hubs with 126mm spacing on the rear for my 87 Canondale road bike. I converted this tiring frame from 27″ to 700c. They have been great. I am running 28mm Schwalbe Marathons on them. Just finished a century on them yesterday. I have maybe 300 miles on them so far.

  • alcahueteria says:

    I ran delgado’s when I first built my 29er because they were pretty much the only reasonable rim-only option billed as a 29-er years ago. Being 230lb and running rigid I was a bit hesitant to go with a regular road rim.

    I did not have good luck with them however so I changed over to the dyads (which were billed as a tandem rim) and they were awesome for years. I ran them for about 5 years on my bike, rigid, with very few issues. I did though end up with cracks at the nipples. However, that seemed acceptable with the abuse I gave them.

    I just upgraded to the blunts by velocity. They seem much more stiff, but with no braking surface it’s not really much of an option for most road bikes (except maybe that glorious looking civia bryant!). On a side note, the glowing polka dot finish holds up pretty well too!

  • EcoVelo » Blog Archive » Long-Term Road Test: Rivendell Sam Hillborne says:

    […] me reasonably well, I fairly quickly upgraded to a set of bomb-proof, 36H touring wheels built with Shimano XT hubs and Velocity Dyad rims. I also swapped out the stock kickstand for a Pletscher double. My favorites from the list include […]

  • William says:

    FWIW, I have sidewall damage from running the dyads with 33mm Jack Browns. It was a dumb move on my part, taking a curb at a good clip and a bit too shallow an angle. I heard the curb make contact with the rim, and now the rim will never be quite truable. That was at least 5k miles ago, and the wheel is still strong other than the hop.

    Moral of the story: 33mm is maybe a tad on the narrow side for these rims, but it’s fine if you are careful.

  • Jeff says:

    Thanks for the review and the subsequent information. I’m looking at wheelsets for light touring and the Velocity Dyad has come to my attention.

    I’m curious about the gumwall tire in that picture, though. What brand is it? I’m looking for puncture-resistant gumwall tires like the Pasela Tourguard that can handle more air pressure for a slightly faster ride.

  • Alan says:


    That’s a Rivendell Jack Brown Blue:


  • Dave's Bike Journal , Midge says:

    […] XT hubs laved to a 36h Velocity Dyad rim, 14g silver spokes, silver brass nipples, and Velox tape. Built personally by Mean Todd. Not a […]

  • rob says:

    I know this is an ancient post, but I feel an intense need to mention that the Dyad is essentially the 622 version of the AeroHeat 559 rim, so anyone impressed by the feedback the Dyad is getting on EcoVelo and looking for something similar in 26″ flavor should look at the AeroHeats.

  • Alan says:

    Thanks, Rob!

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